Monday, May 18, 2015

18th May (Monday) ,2015 Daily Exclusive ORYZA Rice E-Newsletter by Riceplus Magazine

Global Rice Market Dominated by Government Intervention, Finds USITC Report
May 15, 2015

The U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC), and independent, non-partisan, fact-finding federal agency, which had launched an investigation to study global competitiveness of the U.S. rice industry in June last year has found that the global rice market is characterized by relatively low trading volumes and heavy government intervention in both export and import sectors, according to a news releas
e on its website.
In the report, Rice: Global Competitiveness of the U.S. Industry, which has been prepared on the request of the House Committee on Ways and Means, the USITC noted that governments often intervene in the rice markets to control prices and make them affordable for low-income groups. It also aims to increase local rice production to achieve national self-sufficiency.The report classifies the major rice producing countries as follows: 1) major consumers and surplus producers such as India and Thailand, 2) major consumers and importers such as Indonesia and the Philippines, or 3) major exporters but not major consumers, such as the U.S. and Uruguay. It also finds that recently Myanmar, Cambodia, India, Pakistan, Uruguay, and Vietnam are turning out to be low-cost producers of long-grain white rice giving a tough competition to the U.S. and Uruguay, the traditional exporters of this type of rice.
It specifically provides an overview of the rice industry in the U.S. and other major global producing and exporting countries and information on recent trade trends and developments in the global market for rice. It compares the competitive strengths and weaknesses of rice production and exports in the U.S. vis-à-vis other major exporting countries. It also provides a quantitative assessment of the impact of government policies and programs in major producing and exporting countries and their impact on the U.S. rice exports and imports.It states that import tariffs on rice in major consuming countries hugely impacted the U.S. production and exports in 2013. It also states that in recent years, the U.S lost its  market share in key export markets, such as Mexico, Central America, the European Union, Haiti, and Ghana.
Relatively Weak Demand and Supply Conditions May Impact Global Rice Trade in 2016, Says USDA
May 15, 2015
  In its May Rice Outlook report, USDA has forecasted 2016 global rice trade at around 42.3 million tons, down about 2% from an estimated 43.15 million tons in 2015. USDA says the decline in global trade in 2016 can be attributed to weaker shipments from India as well as weaker purchases by Southeast Asia and Sub-Saharan Africa.
On the exports side, USDA expects Thailand to remain the number one rice exporter in 2016 with 11 million tons followed by India with 8.5 million tons. It expects Vietnam with 6.7 million tons and Pakistan with 3.8 million tons to be third and fourth largest exporters. USDA expects increased exports from Cambodia (1.2 million tons) and Myanmar (2 million tons), Uruguay (1 million tons), Argentina (580,000 tons), Paraguay (500,000 tons) and Egypt (400,000 tons). It however expects exports of Guyana (470,000 tons) and Australia (350,000 tons) to decline.
On the imports side, USDA expects Sub-Saharan Africa (12.3 million tons) to be the top importing region followed by Middle East (6.7 million tons) and East Asia (6.4 million tons). It exects South Asia to import 1.6 million tons, South and North America each to import 1.9 million tons, the EU to import 1.6 million tons and the Caribbean to import one million tons of rice in 2016.
For 2015, USDA raised its export estimates for India and Myanmar but lowered estimates for Cambodia. It increased import estimates for Nigeria but lowered estimates for Ivory Coast.
Philippines 2015 Q1 Paddy Production Surpasses 2014 Q1 Output by 1.41%, Says PSA
May 15, 2015

The Philippines 2015 first quarter (January - March) paddy output has reached around 4.37 million tons, up about 1.41% from around 4.31 million tons during the same period in 2014, according to a report released by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).The PSA report shows that the harvest area in the first quarter of 2015 had declined to around 1.15 million hectares, down about 1% from last year's 1.16 million hectares. However, the yield per hectare increased to around 3.8 tons per hectare, up about 2.27% from around 3.72 tons per hectare last year, says the PSA.
Production increases were witnessed in MIMAROPA, Cagayan Valley, Central Luzon and Ilocos Region due to adequate supply of irrigated water and increased use of hybrid seeds, according to the PSA.
The PSA expects paddy production in the first half of 2015 (January - June) at around 8.27 million tons, down about 1.32% from around 8.38 million tons last year. It expects harvest area during the six-month period to decline to around 2.07 million hectares, own about 1.49% from around 2.1 million hectares last year. It however says the yield during the January-June 2015 period may increase by about 0.17% to around 4 tons per hectare from around 3.99 tons per hectare last year.
According to the PSA, the seasonally adjusted paddy production in the first quarter of 2015 stood at around 4.75 million tons, down about 6.09% from around 5.06 million tons in the fourth quarter of 2014. During this period, the seasonally adjusted farm gate prices of paddy and retail and wholesale prices of rice declined by about 9.15%. 3.26% and 1.62% respectively from their 2014 Q4 levels.
Oryza Afternoon Recap - Chicago Rough Rice Futures Give Back a Portion of Yesterday's Gains as Outside Markets Weigh on Prices
May 15, 2015
Chicago rough rice futures for Jul delivery settled 6 cents per cwt (about $1 per ton) lower at $9.575 per cwt (about $211 per ton). The other grains finished the day lower as traders likely took money off of the table ahead of the weekend; Soybeans closed about 0.4% lower at $9.5325 per bushel; wheat finished about 0.6% lower at $5.1100 per bushel, and corn finished the day about 0.7% lower at $3.6550 per bushel.
U.S. stocks traded in a narrow range on Friday, following a record close on the S&P 500, as investors eyed lower bond yields and the dollar, amid data releases. U.S. Treasury yields extended recent declines, with the 10-year yield edging lower to 2.13% and the 30-year yield at 2.92%. The German 10-year bund yield declined to 0.62%. On Tuesday, bond yields hit six-month highs of 2.366% on the U.S. 10-year and 3.128% on the 30-year. Most analysts said the moves in the fixed-income market remain within a range. The major stock indices fluctuated around the flat-line, with the S&P trading briefly topping its closing high set on Thursday but holding below its intraday record. Stocks dipped, briefly extending losses, after the University of Michigan's consumer sentiment report came in at 88.6, the lowest in 7 months. Adding to the week's disappointing data, Empire Manufacturing data showed a reading of 3.09, below expectations of 5 but above last month's negative figure. The Dow Jones Industrial Average traded down 9 points, or 0.05%, at 18,242. The S&P 500 traded down 2 points, or 0.10%, at 2,119, with utilities leading six sectors higher and financials the greatest decliner. The Nasdaq traded down 11 points, or 0.21%, at 5,039. Gold is trading about 0.1% lower, crude oil is seen trading about 0.3% lower, and the U.S. dollar is seen trading about 0.2% lower at about  1:00pm Chicago time.
Thursday, there were 458 contracts traded, down from 505 contracts traded on Wednesday. Open interest – the number of contracts outstanding – on Thursday decreased by 54 contracts to 11,209

Oryza Overnight Recap – Chicago Rough Rice Futures Slightly Lower Overnight as Market Weighs Meaning of Yesterday’s Rally
May 15, 2015
Chicago rough rice futures for Jul delivery are currently seen paused 4.5 cent per cwt (about $1 per ton) lower at $9.590 per cwt (about $211 per ton) ahead of floor trading in Chicago. The other grains are seen trading mixed overnight; soybeans are currently seen about 0.2% higher, wheat is listed about 0.5% lower and corn is currently noted unchanged.
U.S. stock index futures indicated a higher open on Friday, ahead of some further data releases and following a record market close on Thursday. Traders on Friday will focus on May consumer sentiment and April's industrial production, after a week of mixed economic data pared economic growth forecasts for both the first and second quarter. Empire Manufacturing data showed a reading of 3.09, below expectations of 5 but above last month's negative figure. The University of Michigan's consumer sentiment is due at 10:00 a.m. ET. The U.S. dollar recovered slightly on Friday, but held near recent lows, after the euro topped $1.14 for the first time since February on Thursday. European equities were higher in morning trade on Friday as investor sentiment was buoyed by comments from Mario Draghi, president of the European Central Bank.
 Draghi said on Thursday that the central bank would "implement in full" its bond-buying program, which would stay in place "as long as needed." U.S. stocks closed one percent higher on Thursday as investors cheered further weakness in the dollar and calmer bond markets, amid mixed economic data. The S&P 500 set a new closing record with information technology jumping 1.7% to lead all 10 sectors higher.  Gold is currently trading about 0.7% lower, crude oil is seen trading about 0.5% lower,  and the U.S. dollar is currently trading about 0.5% higher at 8:15am Chicago time

Malaysia Targets 100% Rice Self-Sufficiency by 2020, Says Agriculture Minister
May 15, 2015

The government of Malaysia is targeting to achieve 100% self-sufficiency in rice production by 2020, local sources quoted the country's  Minister of Agriculture and Agro-Based Industry.The Minister told local sources that the Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Ministry has decided to spend about RM2.2 billion (around $615 million) this year to help rice farmers to improve output. He noted that various strategies and plans, including upgrading of the irrigation system in the Muda Agricultural Development Authority (Mada) areas, are being considered to achieve the target.
He said the farmers need to increase their yield to about seven tons per hectare from the current six tons per hectare to reach the self-sufficiency target.Malaysia produces about 64% of rice needed for annual consumption of about 2.8 million tons and imports the rest. The Minister expressed that while 90,000 tons are imported officially, nearly one million tons are imported unofficially into the country.USDA estimates Malaysia to produce about 1.8 million tons of rice and import about one million tons of rice in MY 2014-15 (January 2015 - December 2015).
Philippines Begins "Bounty on Rats' Tails" Program to Support Rice Farmers' Families Ahead of El Nino
May 15, 2015

The government of Philippines is taking proactive measures to limit production losses from El Nino triggered droughts as well as support rice farmers' families, according to Bloomberg.The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Australia and Japan Weather Bureaus declared the onset of an El Nino. They noted that droughts in Australia and Southeast Asia would provide with early indications of the intensity of the El Nino. A Bangkok-based senior economist at the United Nations’ FAO told Bloomberg that if an El Nino aggravates drought conditions, rice output in Indonesia, India, Bangladesh and the Philippines may be worst affected.
More than half of the provinces in the Philippines have been suffering from a dry spell and the government is trying to reduce the impact of dry weather conditions on the rice output. It has begun fast tracking irrigation projects, building systems to collect rainwater as well as seeding clouds.Apart from agriculture related measures it is also trying out various programs that would help in reducing crop losses due to pests and rodents as well as support farmers' families. For instance the "bounty on rats' tails" program under which the government offers a kilogram of rice for every 10 rat tails given by farmers. This program mainly helps crop losses from rats as well as provides security to farmers. Farmers are understood to have taking up this program with a lot of enthusiasm. They say they are also enjoying the rat food, which tasted like chicken. Some farmers are known to have traded about 37,000 tails with the government.
USDA Forecasts 2015-16 Global Milled Rice Production to Increase Due to Higher Acreage
May 15, 2015

In its May Rice Outlook report, USDA forecasts 2015-16 global milled rice production at around 482.1 million tons, up about 1.3% from an estimated 475.7 million tons in 2014-15 due to an expected increase in rice acreage.USDA forecasts 2015-16 global rice acreage at around 161.9 million hectares, up about 1% from an estimated 160.2 million hectares in 2014-15 and most of the increase in acreage is expected in Bangladesh, India and Thailand. USDA forecasts the average global yield at 4.44 tons per hectare (on rough rice basis), fractionally below 2014-15.
Assuming normal weather conditions, USDA initially expects East Asia (161 million tons, 1% increase y/y), Southeast Asia (118.2 million tons, 2% increase y/y), and Sub-Saharan Africa (14.3 million tons, 2% increase y/y) to harvest record crops in 2015-16. It also expects South Asia (152.4 million tons, 2% increase y/y) to harvest a larger crop. USDA forecasts Middle East rice production to increase 3% y/y to around 2.48 million tons.USDA expects higher production in Ivory Coast, Nigeria, Myanmar and Japan in 2014-15. Increase in output from these countries is expected to offset by a decline in production in Thailand and Madagascar, says USDA.
USDA estimates 2015-16 global rice consumption and residual use at around 489 million tons, up about 1% from last year's 484 million tons. China accounts for the bulk of the projected increase in global consumption, according to USDA. Rice consumption is expected to reach record-high in Bangladesh, Myanmar, Cambodia, India, Indonesia, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam. Consumption is estimated to exceed production by 6.9 million tons.
The U.S. agency estimates 2015-16 global rice ending stocks to decline by about 7% y/y to around 91.5 million tons. USDA estimates lower ending stocks in India, Indonesia and Thailand but higher stocks in the U.S. It estimates 2014-15 global stocks-to-use ratio at 18.7%, down from last year's 20.3%.
Tax on Rice Imports Pushes Up Bangladesh Rice Prices, Say Millers
May 15, 2015

The imposition of a 10% tax on rice imports from May 10, 2015 is said to have a positive effect on the rice prices in Bangladesh, according to local sources.Some rice millers have told local sources that their trading activities had been affected by too much of imports from India in the recent past. As importers bought rice cheaply from India, they could afford to sell at cheap prices locally but local millers and traders could not afford to sell at such low prices. Due to this reason, most of the traders have been left with huge stocks with them. Therefore most of the millers were forced to cut down production in most of their mills.
Private traders in the country imported about 1.36 million tons of rice as of May 12, 2015 in the FY 2014-15 (July - June), about 3.6 times higher than 374,560 tons imported during the whole of FY 2013-14, according to the Food Ministry. Prices were severely impacted in the beginning of the Boro harvest season due to increasing imports. However, some millers told local sources that the imposition of tax on rice imports has had positive effect on prices. They noted that prices of BR-28 boro paddy variety have started increasing in most of the markets. The particular variety of Boro paddy has been selling at around Tk 575 - Tk 650 per 40 kilograms (around $182 - $206 per ton) compared to around Tk 400 - Tk 500 per 40 kilograms (around $127 - $158 per ton) a week ago.
A Food Ministry official expressed confidence that the government's procurement drive on May 30 will further push up the prices. The government has planned to procure one million tons of 2015 Boro (January - May) paddy and 100,000 tons of Boro rice between May 1, 2015 and August 31, 2015. It has fixed the procurement price for paddy at Tk 22 per kilogram (around $283 per ton) and that for rice at Tk 32 per kilogram (around $412 per ton).  The government is expecting an output of around 19 million tons from the current Boro crop.Bangladesh produced around 34.449 million tons of rice, basis milled, in FY 2013-14 (July - June), up about 2.7% from around 33.833 million tons produced in FY 2012-13, according to DAE data.USDA estimates Bangladesh’s MY 2014-15 (July 2014 – June 2015) milled rice production to slightly increase to about 34.6 million tons from an estimated 34.39 million tons in MY 2013-14. It estimates Bangladesh to import 600,000 tons of rice in 2015.  
Thailand Rice Sellers Lower Some of Their Quotes; Pakistan Rice Sellers Increase Most of Their Quotes Today
May 15, 2015
Thailand rice sellers lowered their quotes for Hommali rice by about a $10 per ton to around $865 - $875 per ton today. Pakistan rice sellers increased most of their quotes by about $5-$25 per ton. Other Asia rice sellers kept their quotes mostly unchanged today.
5% Broken Rice
Thailand 5% rice is indicated at around $370 - $380 per ton, about a $20 per ton premium on Vietnam 5% rice  shown at around $350 - $360 per ton. India 5% rice is indicated at around $370 - $380 per ton, about a $45 per ton discount to Pakistan 5% rice shown at around $415 - $425 per ton, up about a $25 per ton from yesterday.
25% Broken Rice
Thailand 25% rice is shown at around $350 - $360 per ton, about a $20 per ton premium on Vietnam 25% rice shown at around $330- $340 per ton. India 25% rice is indicated at around $345 - $355, about a $5 per ton discount to Pakistan 25% rice shown at around $350 - $360 per ton, up about a $5 per ton from yesterday.
Parboiled Rice
Thailand parboiled rice is indicated at around $370 - $380 per ton. India parboiled rice is indicated at around $360 - $370 per ton, about a $50 per ton discount to Pakistan parboiled rice shown at around $410 - $420 per ton, up about a $20 per ton from yesterday.
100% Broken Rice
Thailand broken rice, A1 Super, is indicated at around $315 - $325 per ton, about a $10 per ton premium on Vietnam 100% broken rice shown at around $305 - $315 per ton. India's 100% broken rice is shown at around $270 - $280 per ton,  about a $25 per ton discount to Pakistan broken sortexed rice shown at around $295 - $305 per ton, up about a $5 per ton from yesterday.

Download/View On-Line the above News in pdf format,just click the following link

18th May (Monday) ,2015 Daily Exclusive ORYZA Rice E-Newsletter by Riceplus Magazine

18th May (Monday) ,2015 Daily Exclusive ORYZA Rice E-Newsletter by Riceplus Magazine

Who actually owns Basmati?

According to a couple of news items published recently in an English weekly and an Urdu daily respectively, “India has been successful in getting the Basmati brand of Rice registered in its name in the Indonesian market, whereas it should have been Pakistan’s prerogative to register it, because Basmati belongs to Pakistan”.Let us just not be investigative about the veracity of the news items and try to understand what the real issue is, because the claim of ownership of Basmati between India and Pakistan has been in the news now for many years and thus far there is no clear verdict as to who really owns the Basmati; Pakistan, India or both.Owning Basmati here means that any of the two countries can register it as an exclusive product of their country, because it is produced in a particular region, having a particular quality, reputation and characteristics of that region, which bring Basmati or any other such product under the definition of Geographical Indication (GI).
The claim of Basmati ownership as GI between India and Pakistan is in litigation both in Pakistani and Indian courts
GI is covered under the scope of World Trade Organisation’s (WTO) agreement on Trade Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) and if it is established that a particular product falls under the definition of GI, the country or region producing that product can claim it as its intellectual property and may not allow any other country to use the same name or reputation, because it may create confusion among the consumers as to what is the real origin of this particular product.The claim of Basmati ownership as GI between India and Pakistan is in litigation both in Pakistani and Indian courts.
According to The Financial Times (January 2015) Basmati Growers Association (BGA) in Pakistan have Basmati GI tag partially registered in their country and a litigation was going on in a Pakistan court between them and India’s APEDA (Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority) over the GI tag given to Basmati rice from Pakistan. BGA has also appealed against granting of GI tag to Indian Basmati rice in Intellectual Property Appellate Board (IPAB) of India. BGA was of the view that Basmati is a name for a slender, aromatic and long grain variety of rice grown in the specific geographical area at the foothills of the Himalayas in Pakistan.On the other hand, APEDA had filed an application with the GI Registry of India to register the name Basmati for rice covering Punjab, Haryana, Delhi, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and part of Uttar Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir.
Interestingly, the conflict of owning the registration of Basmati is not just between India and Pakistan, but it also exists within these countries as well.According to Rice Exporters Association of Pakistan (REAP), the government of Pakistan, and not the REAP or Basmati Growers Association (BGA) or any other private body, should own the Basmati as GI. REAP is of the view that by giving the GI right of Basmati to any association, it may monopolise it which will be uncompetitive and that particular association may also manipulate the prices as per its wishes.

BGA is of the view that the registration of Basmati as GI is the sole prerogative of the growers (400 growers approximately in this case), because the concept of GI is area specific and principally it is the grower which should be given the right as basmati is grown in a particular region and the farmers or growers belong to a particular region not the exporters.Pakistan doesn’t have any GI law as yet and protects the GI under Trademarks Ordinance 2004. It is noteworthy here that under Collective Mark provision of Trademarks Ordinance, any private body can apply for registration of any GI be it Basmati or any other.
As Pakistan is a responsible member of WTO and TRIPS in this case, all the matters related to disputes are brought in the WTO by a country and not by any association
As per Trade Mark Registry of Pakistan’s (TMR) standpoint, this problem of Basmati ownership as GI may never be resolved, because naturally, everyone would like to establish its own monopoly and reap all the profits coming out of the export of Basmati in the long run. One should think of the related negative externalities coming out of it, which are really damaging the country’s economy.
Anyway, going about it in a rational way, the Basmati should be registered under Certification Mark Regime (mentioned in Trademark Ordinance 2004) and there should be a Certifying Authority, which can be Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) or Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP). TDAP and TCP have their presence all over the country and everyone claiming the right of Basmati should get a certificate of verification from them, which has now even become the prerequisite in some countries that import Basmati.
The TMR’s standpoint sounds plausible as far as the concept of Basmati is concerned. It can also be said that growers also enjoy the priority rights, but again at the end of the day, the product would be monopolised and there would be no end to this dogfight. There would be cartels and monopolies and then Competition Commission would be stepping in and so on.Furthermore, as Pakistan is a responsible member of WTO and TRIPS in this case, all the matters related to disputes are brought in the WTO by a country and not by any association. So, later on problems coming out of the claim of Basmati as GI from any other country, like India, can easily be pursued by the country itself in WTO.

Working on the Basics

By Kasturi Ray I Bhubaneswar
Published: 18th May 2015 06:00 AM
Last Updated: 15th May 2015 11:20 PM
it in laboratories, research fields or farmlands, women play an important role in rice production in Odisha. Particularly, women scientists who have been associated with rice research institutes like Indian Council of Agricultural Research-Central Rice Research Institute (ICAR-CRRI), Cuttack. They conduct backbreaking research in fields related to the crop and apply the same in fields to boost the crop yield in the 69 per cent of cultivated area and about 63 percent of the total area under food grains cultivation in the State.
Being the staple food of the State, Odisha’s economy is directly linked with improvements in production and productivity of rice in the State. Though research is not an area preferred by youngsters — particularly women — who graduate from the State agriculture universities and colleges, there are a few who have opted to get into research due to their passion for the field and satisfaction involved though the results could take years to come by. These few have been in the field for long and proved their mettle setting new trends for youngsters to emulate.

Young researchers working in the lab at CRRI|PICs: Shamim Qureshy

Pic courtesy: M Tracy Hunter
“Research is a long process and youngsters these days want to earn fast without having to wait. Research therefore should be taken up by people who are ready to go that extra mile and do the hard work and wait for years to get the result,” says Meera Kar, principal scientist, crop improvement division at CRRI, Cuttack. She also talks about the challenges in  conducting research which gets doubled with issues that women face managing the home.

Explaining about breeding a new rice variety, Meera, the only woman rice breeder in the State says, the ultimate aim of any breeding programme is to develop varieties superior to existing ones, with respect to yielding ability, grain quality, resistance/tolerance to biotic and abiotic stresses or any other characteristics as per the breeding objective.It takes about five-six years to develop a superior breeding line, depending on the duration of the line. For commercial utilisation, the superior breeding lines have to be released as varieties by either the Central or State variety release committees.
“The newly developed breeding lines are evaluated for their performance in multi-location trials conducted by All India Coordinated Rice Improvement Project (AICRIP) for three years. Then the superior lines, which show outstanding performance over existing varieties for three consecutive years are identified by Variety Identification Committee (VIC) and subsequently released and notified by either the Central or State variety release committee,’’ she says.Meera does not have any fixed timings at the institute.
 “We come even on holidays, early mornings and late in the evenings, not because of compulsions but because our work demands us to take care of what we are working on,” she explains.The process in breeding for developing a variety is also not easy. “‘It begins with hybridisation, growing the F1 to F6 generations (several combinations of cross-breeding) followed by selection, preliminary yield trial and seed increase of superior lines, AICRIP Trials (Initial Variety Trial-Advanced Variety Trial I-Advanced Variety Trial II), Identification by Variety Identification Committee (VIC) and finally release and notification by either the Central or State variety release committee, says the 50-year-old scientist, who has completed her PG and PhD from Orissa University of Agriculture and Technology, Bhubaneswar in Plant Breeding and Genetics.

She has been the recipient of eight gold medals as topper of the batch in BSc (Ag) and MSc (Ag) from Orissa University of Agriculture and Technology and received gold medal for outstanding group performance in ‘Field Experience Training’ awarded by National Academy of Agricultural Research Management, Hyderabad in 1995.Her current area of research includes resistance breeding for multiple insect pests and diseases, breeding rice for higher resource use efficiency, development of super rice for different ecologies, development of high-yielding varieties for rain-fed shallow lowlands and using socio-economic approaches, mechanism and transfer of technologies for sustainable rice productionShe has been trained at International Rice Research Institute, Philippines as well. She has bred seven high-yielding rice varieties for various ecologies of rice which include CR Dhan 303, CR Dhan 304, CR Dhan 305, CR Dhan 301, CR Dhan 306, CR Dhan 205, CR Dhan 206 (Gopinath). Lipi Das, Senior Scientist, Division of Social Sciences, has been associated with CRRI since 2000 after qualifying through Agriculture Research Service (ARS).

A PhD from Benaras Hindu University, Lipi feels, it is very important for women to get into research particularly in the field of agriculture, as most farm work these days is done by women. “Unless we make them understand our new implements, seeds, technology and demonstrate it to them, how will they benefit? As a woman, I am at an advantage to make them listen to me and convince them,”’ says Lipi who uses gender sensitive approaches to rice farming and participatory extension research apart from women entrepreneurship development.As most of the manual drudgery in the field is still handled by women, an action research was undertaken in Sankilo village of Nischintakoili block of Cuttack district by Lipi and her team.A Women’s Development Group named ‘Ananya Mahila Bikash Samiti’ was mobilised with 30 farm women. Suitable rice production technologies were demonstrated to the group and they were given training and taken on exposure visits, apart from supporting them with continuous technical back-stopping and establishing value chains with two private companies for marketing of rice and rice-based value-added products to ensure greater economic benefit for the women.

“The farm women were competent enough to manage both their farm and home efficiently. They could be efficient drivers of national agricultural growth and development, if they can be made socially-empowered and technologically competent through gender sensitive approaches,” says Lipi. She had also been in a project to identify gender issues in technology generation and adoption in rice-based production systems. “We had conducted a study in five rice growing districts, Jagatsinghpur, Cuttack, Balasore, Bargarh and Ganjam of Odisha. An on-farm trial was conducted to evaluate selected drudgery-reducing implements with the participation of 30 farm-women in rice-based production systems.

 We found that except threshing and winnowing, all the production activities were carried out in traditional methods. So on the basis of identified issues, an on-farm trial was conducted in Salipur cluster of Cuttack district to evaluate selected technologies keeping in mind the women’s perspectives in rice-based production system, with four interventions namely, farmers’ practice (where an intervention is developed keeping in mind the usual practices farmers adopt with regard to seeding, weeding and harvesting) (T1), planting by transplanter with hand weeding (T2), planting by transplanter with mechanical weeding by finger weeder (T3), manual planting in rows with hand weeding (T4).

The farm women favoured use of these technologies and the feedback helped us to recommend refinement of programmes on farm implements for women,” she says.She, however, feels, the participation of women in research is lower than expected. “This is an area which has immense potential. Challenges from the home front are there for women in all spheres but research could open new avenues, which could bring about a revolution in the sector,” she adds.Mayabini Jena, principal scientist and head, division of crop protection, at the institute has been attached to research ever since she completed her PhD in Zoology from Utkal University in 1986. She joined CRRI, Cuttack in 1990 as a scientist through ARS and since then has been into research in the area of plant protection.
She has been instrumental in identifying 10 highly resistant donors against brown plant hopper by screening about 2,000 genotypes in green house conditions. She has also found 13 highly BPH (Brown Plant Hopper) resistant breeding lines in the background of identified donor. She has also contributed towards development of scented rice varieties CR Sugandh Dhan 907, Poornabhog, Nua Kalajeera, Nua Dhusara and Nua Chinikamini. Another area of her work is pest control — she has evolved effective insecticides for the control of important rice insect pests in relation to field application as well as to the basic work of persistent toxicity and immediate knock down effect (an immediate treatment to tackle pests).“Research was a fascination for me. It was a long-term goal to achieve excellence in research, and today I am proud to be associated with this field where opportunities for recognition are many. Here, there are more prospects than constraints.

For example, I have worked with toxic substances all my life but I have never felt any danger as I was helped by my seniors at CRRI. In the initial days, I would watch them handle toxic substances and they would keep me away till I learnt the tricks of the trade.  Now, I reprise the role when youngsters join us,’’ explains Mayabini.She feels, women prove better researchers, provided they are given the right kind of environment to work in. Physical strains apart, women can handle research work better than men, she says. “I come on holidays to nurture the pests which are my subject of study, while  other scientists also come to observe their fields. It is a 24-hour job but you have the convenience of flexibility.
 If you are an achiever, your efforts will never go unnoticed and there is no bossism in the field of research,’’ she adds.Director of CRRI, Cuttack, T Mohapatra, quite upbeat about the women working at CRRI says, in comparison to earlier times, now women can be seen at most research institutes. “We have quite a few women scientists here who are doing exceptionally well.
The opportunities elsewhere are so many that not only girls, even boys shy away from entering a hard-working arena like research, that too rice cultivation. Research is a long-term process,” says Mohapatra. He says, “Balancing both home and work well, our scientists have come up with very good materials. They have been lone fighters like Barbara McClintock (an American scientist, whose revolutionary discovery of “jumping genes’’ and many other contributions to the field of genetics earned her the Nobel Prize in 1983). So, promoting them and identifying potential researchers is important. We want more women to be a part of agricultural research; it will help in the development of the field and accelerate the realisation of development goals,” he adds.
Yingluck ready to defend herself in court

THE NATION May 16, 2015 1:00 am
FORMER prime minister Yingluck Shinawatra said yesterday she would attend the first hearing at the Supreme Court's Criminal Division on Holders of Political Positions on Tuesday for a case in which she is accused of negligence in connection with her government's controversial rice-pledging scheme.Yingluck said she was ready to defend herself in her opening statement before the court.She was speaking to reporters at her sister Yaowapa Wongsawat's birthday party at the latter's home in Chaeng Wattana area north of Bangkok.
Yaowapa was also a key figure in the then-ruling Pheu Thai Party.In March, the court accepted the case against Yingluck and declared that she would have to stand trial. Yingluck is charged with dereliction of duty and abuse of authority as well as violating the Criminal Code and the Anti-Corruption Act. She is accused of failing to prevent corruption in the rice-pledging scheme, which resulted in estimated losses of over Bt500 billion to the state. If found guilty, she could face up to 10 years in jail. She is required to appear in court on the first day of hearing, when the court will decide if she will be granted bail. On Thursday, a subcommittee of the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC), which took the case to court, resolved to bring charges against Yingluck and 33 of her former Cabinet members for misconduct and abuse of power in relation to her government paying compensation to red-shirt protesters and supporters.
Yingluck and the 33 others were informed in writing of the NACC's allegations and have 15 days to respond, Vicha Mahakhun, head of the panel responsible for the case, said. Red-shirt compensation queried.During Yingluck's tenure, some Bt2 billion was paid in compensation to protesters who were injured and relatives of those who died during protests held between 2005 and 2010. Asked to comment on these allegations yesterday, Yingluck said it was not the right time - as she wants things to be carried out in line with required process. "Today is an auspicious day and I don't want to discuss the details of this case," she said. Vicha said there was no law to back the disbursement of payouts as approved by Yingluck's cabinet. There was also a conflict of interest in her government's approval of the payments because the recipients were the main supporters of her political party.

4-H Science of Agriculture Challenge deepens students' understanding of science in Minnesota

By NANCY MADSEN Associated Press

MAY 18, 2015 — 12:05AM
NEW PRAGUE, Minn. — Brian and Anna Prchal and Tyler Fromm are teenagers making and using biodiesel. They're also part of a possible solution for a growing need for employees in agriculture.There are 25,700 new jobs for management and business in agriculture and 14,600 new jobs in agriculture and science engineering each year, according to a U.S. Department of Agriculture analysis of job figures. The gap between expected job openings and agriculture and related fields graduates is roughly 1,000 each year.For junior high and high school students, "4-H involvement could lead to college, university or even trade school and an ag-related job," said Josh Rice, who runs the science of agriculture programming at University of Minnesota Extension.
"Agricultural awareness is a very important piece of this. There are ag jobs out there and it's not just production agriculture. It can be marketing, processing, distribution and even social science."Minnesota is the first state to start a 4-H Science of Agriculture Challenge, which is a team competition showing science and engineering understanding, The Free Press ( ) reported. The teams have three or four members between grades six and 12 who share a common interest. A coach guides them through the scientific or engineering process. The teams also meet with a mentor from the industry, who gives guidance and an inside view of an agricultural career.Brian and Anna Prchal of Montgomery and their cousin Tyler Fromm of New Hope teamed up to work on biodiesel. Jodi Prchal, Brian and Anna's mother and a fifth-grade teacher, is their coach.
Brian created biodiesel from used fryer oil at a local restaurant. He describes the process in detail on how to transform that oil into fuel."You can burn straight filtered vegetable oil in a diesel engine, but it gums up the engine," Brian said.After filtering it, the major step in the process was carefully combining the oil with methanol and potassium hydroxide, which separates the fatty acids from the glycerin, which settles to the bottom. The fatty acids bond with methanol to transform the molecules into biodiesel. That is followed by "washing" the biodiesel with water to cause even more separation, leaving a transparent light orange liquid.Jodi Prchal says the critical moment came when they tried it in an engine. Brian had bought a single-cylinder, nine horsepower diesel engine and it ran smoothly on the biodiesel.
Brian's goal, he said, is to be able to have a diesel truck and run it on his own biodiesel."I've always been really interested in renewable energy," he said.He made 1 liter of biodiesel for this project but wants a setup that will allow him to make 30 gallons at a time with less intervention. "It would cost 70 cents a gallon if you do it right versus $4 per gallon of diesel, when diesel was high," Brian said.He tested the efficiency and the acidity of the biodiesel against diesel."Biodiesel is not as efficient as conventional diesel," he said. "But the pollutants were far less. The pH didn't go up a lot. Diesel has some sulfur in the exhaust, so biodiesel is better for the environment."Anna's and Tyler's projects branch off of Brian's.
Anna tested his biodiesel against kerosene and ethanol for pollutants and energy. She created a calorimeter by suspending a pop can with some water over burners of biodiesel, ethanol and kerosene. She judged pollutants by burning the fuels inside a cylinder with a coffee filter covering the top end."The kerosene had the most soot, I was in the basement and there was soot all over," Anna said. "Ethanol had nothing and biodiesel had some spots. Kerosene had the highest temperatures, then ethanol and biodiesel. The better option would be ethanol than biodiesel."Tyler researched fuels and talked to professionals. After sharing the research with Brian and Anna, he tested the wear of engines when using regular diesel and biodiesel.
"The biodiesel was better for wear," he said.The three have all been around farms their whole lives and have been involved in 4-H, frequently competing at the Minnesota State Fair. The team has been working on the project since October. In June, they'll give a presentation to a panel of judges. Questions from the judges will follow the presentations."That's what highlights the deeper learning that's taken place," Rice said. "There has been a lot of time that the youth have been engaged in active learning."There are 14 teams competing for scholarships — $1,000 for each teammate for first, $750 for second and $500 for third.The scholarships can be used at any accredited trade school, college or university, for any major because, Rice said, "Any college major that we talk about, we can make a connection to agriculture."Students are also eligible to participate each year from sixth grade to high school graduation, even if they have already won one or multiple scholarships.After getting the feedback from the trial year, Rice said he hopes to more than double the number of teams next year.
"Over the next five years, we're hoping for a national program," Rice said. "Once other states offer the same program, there may be a national contest."But, at the basic level, the program may attract young people to science and engineering fields, deepen their understanding, allow them to take more advanced science classes in high school, and eventually lead to the qualified employees that agricultural businesses know they're going to need."This could potentially change what agriculture looks like," Rice said. "This can help students know they have the capability of being scientists and engineers."On Team Prchal-Fromm, that's already understood.Brian knows he's going to double major in mechanical and agricultural engineering at college in the fall.
His sister, in eighth grade, knows she wants to work with animals or the environment. And Tyler, also in eighth grade, wants to work for the Department of Natural Resources.Brian joked, "That's just because you want to fish and get paid for it."Tyler shrugged and said, "That would be great."This is an AP Member Exchange shared by The Free Press

Paddy buying up 21% in kharif

Till May 13, rice millers in the state have already delivered 1.48 million tonne of rice
BS Reporter  |  Bhubaneswar  
May 17, 2015 Last Updated at 20:31 IST
Paddy procurement in the state in the kharif season of 2014-15 has moved up 21 per cent over the previous year, a top government official said here."The chief secretary reviewed the performance of the kharif season. We have procured four million tonne of paddy equivalent to 2.72 million tonne of rice.", said M S Padhee, secretary, food supplies and consumer welfare.Till May 13, rice millers in the state have already delivered 1.48 million tonne of rice. Rice delivery this time is 60 per cent higher than the last year, said Padhee.
The district collectors have been asked to review procurement at regular intervals and ensure that millers deliver the entire rice by September 30, he added.For the Rabi season, the state has set a target of procuring 730,000 tonne of rice and this is expected to be finished by June 30.Odisha produces close to eight million tonne paddy in a year, the fifth largest in the country. While 60 per cent of the total production is processed in the state, the rest is exported to other states.

Jute mills look towards policy support

By Ritwik Mukherjee May 17 2015
Tags: Commodities

Falling demand and rising wages have the 160-year-old industry in throes of death

The Rs 8,000 crore plus jute industry is in the throes of a demand crisis. Jute mills in the organised sector, especially in West Bengal, are finding it tough to cope with rising costs of wages and electricity.Members of the Indian Jute Mills Association (IJMA) as well as jute mill owners outside the organisation met a group of ministers from the West Bengal government last Thursday to discuss the issue.Among those present were finance and commerce minister Amit Mitra, agriculture minister Purnendu Basu, higher education minister Partha Chatterjee, labour minister Moloy Ghatak and panchayat and rural development minister Subrata Mukherjee.West Bengal is home to 75 per cent (64 out 84) jute mills in the country. According to industry officials, jute mills in the state had been running at 60 per cent of the capacity and a large number of workers had been rendered jobless.
 It further witnessed a 30 to 40 per cent reduction few months ago because of lack of orders.“We hope that the state government will soon announce a policy to ensure a vibrant, profitable and committed jute industry, not for the industrialists but for the 40 lakh rural farmers and 3 lakh workers employed in the sector. The 160-year-old industry with rich legacy and heritage cannot be allowed to die, especially when the state government is committed to meet the aspirations of common man,” said IJMA chairman Raghavendra Gupta.A large section of jute mills in the state have been rendered financially sick. Working capital in most cases stands eroded and the units are crippled with mounting liabilities.
To survive, jute mills need to modernise for which they require large funds. Permission may be granted to the mills to use their existing infrastructure and surplus land for alternate purposes to generate funds.According to analysts, the demand crisis can be resolved if the state government steps in and makes the policy announcement that rice millers and potato growers in West Bengal must pack their produce in jute bags. They can be used even for packaging levy rice procured by the West Bengal government. IJMA has informed the state food and supplies department that the jute mills are willing to supply bags to rice millers provided indents are raised by the government. Also, payment will be accepted for jute bags from the state government as and when the Union government makes it.
 However, this will be a stop-gap arrangement and last till such time the West Bengal government can arrange the Rs 130 crore required for the supply of jute bags through the DGS&D mechanism.Further, the organised jute sector is unable to cope with the rising costs of labour and power. In fact, jute manufacturing in about 50 mills in and around Kolkata is becoming unviable. Same is the case with manufacturing units in other states of India, Nepal and Bangladesh.The April 2 tripartite agreement has further increased the cost of wages for jute mills in West Bengal. According to sector analysts, to stay competitive, production and productivity will have to be ensured in the jute mills. During negotiations for a wage settlement, the mill managements were assured that within a month of signing the agreement, a productivity study for individual mills would be carried out and the same would be implemented in mills.
Unless wages are linked to productivity, survival of the jute mills would become difficult. The concept of time-rated and piece-rated workmen has been prevalent in the jute industry over decades and it is only over time that it has lost its significance. Productivity-linked wages were part of wage agreements of 2002 and 2010, but they were not implemented.The turnaround in the jute sector will also depend on how soon the 100 per cent productivity-linked wages through a jute policy is re-introduced.

Kharif paddy procurement up 21% in Odisha

Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, May 16: 
With total procurement of around 40 lakh metric tonne (LMT), paddy procurement during khariff 2014-15 in Odisha has gone up 21 percent over last year.This was revealed at the State Level Procurement Committee meeting presided over by chief secretary GC Pati at the State Secretariat here today.Briefing newsmen after the meeting, commissioner-cum-secretary, Food Supplies & Consumer Welfare, Madhusudan Padhi said there has been 21 percent growth in paddy procurement and 65 percent growth in delivery of customed mill rice over last year.
Stating that around 14.84 LMT of rice has already been delivered to Food Corporation of India (FCI) and Rice Receiving Centres (RRCs), he said Rabi procurement will be taken up in 2-3 days in all the mandis and the number of procurement days will be extended to six days a week.The chief secretary directed all Revenue Divisional Commissioners (RDCs) to review the progress of the recovery of rice from the millers and take follow-up action wherever warranted. He directed them to initiate criminal actions against defaulting millers.
Reviewing the modalities of procurement, the chief secretary advised the department to review the online system of farmers registration put in place last year and link farmers’ registration with Aaadhar numbers.It was decided that fresh farmers’ registration for the coming khariff season will be done in advance by the banks/PACS at the time of advancing crop loans. As per available data, 7,82,917 farmers for Khariff and 1,55,493 farmers for Rabi have been registered online.The Paddy Procurement Automation System (P-PAS) has successfully been implemented in 60 high-procurement blocks last season. Around 46 percent of the total paddy procured has been transacted through this automated system, which has benefited around 2,28,816 farmers.For Rabi procurement, the P-PAS will be applied in 36 blocks of 12 high-procurement districts.The chief secretary asked the department to extend the system to 160 blocks during coming Khariff procurement, undertake an assessment study on satisfaction of the farmers with P-PAS system and to get inputs from them for further improvement.
Among other things, issues relating to collection of rice from millers, strategy and preparedness for Rabi paddy procurement, creation of new rack points in railway, modernization of existing rice mills and establishment of new rice mills in deficient districts were discussed at the meeting.The meeting was attended by principal secretary, Agriculture, Rajesh Verma; principal secretary, Cooperation Manoj Ahuja; director, Agriculture Pramod Meherda; registrar, Cooperative Societies, Dhiren Kumar Patanik; RDCs and senior officials of the concerned departments.

Thai rice prices at 11-month low on weak demand

May 17, 2015
Thai rice prices were mired at their weakest level in 11 months this week as demand remained low, but rates for the grain from Vietnam rose slightly on hopes key buyer Philippines would soon issue an import tender, traders said on Wednesday. Thailand's 5 percent broken white rice stood unchanged at $385 a tonne, free-on-board (FOB) basis, the lowest since June 2014. "I don't know where else prices can go, there are no buyers," a Thai trader based in Bangkok said, adding that prices were expected to change little for the rest of the month.
The Thai government may consider a tender at a meeting next week as it seeks to sell 10 million tonnes this year, Duangporn Rodphaya, a director at the Commerce Ministry said on Tuesday. In Vietnam, the world's third-largest rice exporter after India and Thailand in 2014, prices edged up due to prospects of a possible tender in the Philippines, traders said. Vietnam's 5-percent broken rice rose to $360-$363 a tonne, FOB basis, from $355-$360 a tonne a week ago, and the 25 percent broken rice rose to $340 a tonne, from $330-$335 last Wednesday. Manila may buy between 200,000-310,000 tonnes or rice via a tender, industry sources in Thailand and the Philippines have said.
The Philippines, one of the world's top rice importers, usually buys most of its rice from Vietnam. But increasing global rice supplies could drag on Vietnam's rice export prices this month, the government said in a report this week, citing a projection by the Finance Ministry-run Price Control Department. Purchases by China, Vietnam's top rice buyer, have not picked up even though many Chinese traders have been to Vietnam in recent weeks, traders in Ho Chi Minh City said. China has surplus rice and to curb cheap imports and cut state reserves, the government allocated 2015 import quotas only to mills which also buy from state reserves. China's output in the 2014/15 marketing year is expected to edge up 1.4 percent to 144.5 million tonnes of milled rice, the US Department of Agriculture's Foreign Agricultural Service said in a report for May.

Saudi rice imports from India rise 58% to SR4.5bn in 2014

Published — Sunday 17 May 2015
Last update 16 May 2015 9:34 pm
The value of Saudi rice imports to the Kingdom from India grew by 58 percent, reaching $1.19 billion (SR4.46 billion) by the end of 2014, compared to $752.67 million (SR2.82 billion) in 2013, according to Indian Consul General Bawa Syed Mubarak.Speaking to local media, the Indian diplomat said that Saudi rice imports from India dropped by 1 percent in 2013, due to the emergence of certain obstacles but jumped to record levels in the following year (2014)."At the global level, Indian rice exports fetched $7.78 billion (SR29.17 billion) in 2014, comprising a growth rate of more than 25 percent in one year, of which the Saudi share exceeded 15.35 percent," Mubarak said.
The diplomat stressed that the Saudi market is considered a key importer of Indian rice worldwide. He noted that rice represented nearly 10 percent of the overall Indian exports to the Kingdom.The volume of trade exchange between the two countries reached more than $48.62 billion, where Indian exports to the Kingdom amounted to $12.21 billion by the end of 2014 in total, an increase of 12 percent, whereas Saudi exports to India reached $36.40 billion, an increase of 8 percent relative to previous years.
DA-PhilRice introduces eco heating technology
 May 17, 2015
QUEZON CITY, May 17 --  The Department of Agriculture’s Philippine Rice Research Institute (PhilRice) has started the introduction and pilot testing of a machine that processes rice hull into biochar which can be used for cooking, baking, sterilizing and heating brooding chicks.Biochar—commonly called charcoal—is obtained from the pyrolysis of biomass, a process that heats and carbonizes biomass in the absence or under reduction of oxygen.The cogeneration of biochar and heat from rice hull has been made possible with the development of the continuous rice hull (CtRH) carbonizer by PhilRice scientist Dr. Ricardo Orge, who leads the research institution’s Coping with Climate Change Program.
Dr. Orge is also the Central Luzon’s 2015 Gawad Saka Outstanding Agricultural Scientist.The CtRH, being a smokeless carbonizer, and which uses agricultural waste such as rice hull, is not only environment friendly but is also cost-efficient.While the machine processes rice hull into biochar, it generates heat that is then recovered in the carbonizer attachments. These include high-volume cooker, baking oven, sterilizer for mushroom fruiting bags, or heater for brooding chicks. Using the CtRH-generated heat replaces conventional sources such as those produced using LPG or electricity.The high-volume cooker is now being pilot-tested in Bulacan and Aurora.
“It was developed for farmers who want to sell cooked agricultural products such as corn, banana and peanuts,” Dr. Orge said. Dr. Orge added that blueprints are being finalized for its commercialization, together with the CtRH carbonizer. The biochar produced from rice hull, which could otherwise be burned into useless ash or biodegrade to greenhouse gases, can be used as organic fertilizer when combined with animal manure. The biochar also resists degradation and traps carbon—a greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming—in soils for hundreds of years.  Hence, biochar has a significant carbon sequestration value. Dr. Orge said that based on studies, biochar is a potential solution to address some of the most urgent environmental problems the world currently face such as global warming, soil degradation, water pollution by agro-chemicals, and waste management.
Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala said that inventions similar to Dr. Orge’s are important to make agricultural production less costly and harmful to the environment, more efficient, and more adaptable to climate change. He encouraged stakeholders to utilize these technologies, and support efforts to improve and replicate these. (JPD/, DA)

Experts: Bangladesh lacks proper food marketing chain 
Abu Bakar Siddique

Bangladesh still lacks a proper food marketing chain despite having ample food production in the country, according to food experts.Speaking at a discussion titled South-South Cooperation for Food Security at Pan Pacific Sonargaon Hotel in Dhaka yesterday, the experts said the country still needed an improved food distribution and storage system in order to meet the growing demand of food in the increasing urban population  around the country.Mike Robson, country representative of Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) in Bangladesh, said the country needed to take initiatives such as low-energy post-harvest food processing and storage, integrated models of resource use and safety measures to avert pre- and post-harvest damage of foods to ultimately strengthen food security.
In addition, Bangladesh should emphasise on introducing more high-yielding, short-duration and stress-tolerant crop varieties to meet the growing demand of food, he said.According to the government, the country currently produces around 34m tonnes of rice – around 3.5 times the amount produced in 1970.Dr Rafiqul Islam Mondol, director general of Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute (BARI), said the government had already taken several initiatives to develop several short-duration and stress-tolerant crop varieties, including rice, wheat, maize and vegetables.
Bangladesh Rice Research Institute (BRRI) and Bangladesh Institute of Nuclear Agriculture (BINA) has already developed rice varieties tolerant of different stressful condition, such as salinity, drought, submergence and cold, in recent years.Mike Robson also suggested that the government take necessary measures to check the abundant use of fertiliser to produce more food in the country, as it causes damage to the soil fertility to some extent.He also expressed concern over the excessive use of groundwater for irrigation in some areas, which could make a vast area of arable land barren in near future.

Download/View On-Line the above News in pdf format,just click the following link